July 6, 2016 Subject:
Good but tempered
compared to much of the tour. The most consistent of the Lyceum run (it's just called "Lyceum Theater", not Strand), but with fewer major highlights. It's an insane 15-song 1st set, though most are short and it's under 90min. It's also mostly a Pig show; he's on for his songs plus his organ is prominent in the mix.
First Set. This is the tour's only Cold Rain & Snow, though it's average, as is the Beat it on Down the Line-6. Then the machine takes off with a wonderful Mr. Charlie. Pig and Jer are both exceptional. It's odd that Bobby tests the string-skip opening of Weather Report before the absolutely ace Me & My Uncle. Check how Jer transposes on a dime @:41 then goes completely out of control, fitting in overlapping measures like damned magic. Hurts Me Too is on E72 but it's not the tour's best. Dire Wolf is a bit out of tune - 2 nights later it's awesome. Phil plays the Spanish Gypsy Dance before Chinatown. Bobby does one of his alt-intros to China Cat and I love how Jer keeps going during the verses for Rider. Playin' is a good one yet still not tour-tops (such is the level of E72). You Win Again, however is a great example. Jack Straw is not the tightest but this is where the arrangement became set.
Second Set. Rockin' Pneumonia is the 2nd one [the day after the 1st] of 4, but Milwaukee is best. This is the only Black Peter of the tour. Phil does the Mexican Hat Dance before Truckin' and everybody joins in for a rendition. There are a half dozen amazing Truckin's on this tour, and though it may not match 4/21, this is the one where Pig is audible. They played a lot of Dark Stars on the tour but their best jam vehicle at the time was The Other One. This one is 11½ minutes to vox. It's uptempo and listen close to Bobby's astonishing work, such as answering Jer's unison bends. Sing Me Back Home is in Donna's wheelhouse. They went Donna-less on a great Sugar Mag. There are only three Lovelights on the tour and this is the one you want. Jer is fantastic on One More Saturday Night (the single they were plugging for radio play at the time), but he's ahead of the band.
1st Set: B 2nd Set: B
Overall = 4 Stars
Mr. Charlie - Pig and Jer both exceptional
Me & My Uncle - Jer uncontained and whole band fired
You Win Again - Possible best of tour
Black Peter - the only E72 and they saved up
Truckin ' - one of the tour's best and audible Pig
The Other One - Jer and Bobby lock in to each other in several places
Sugar Magnolia - Donna-less but still crazy-good
SOURCES: There were never great sources so the show as a whole has mainly been discovered since official release. However, before that, bits and pieces of the multi-track trickled out. Two tracks were on the original Europe 72 album (Hurts Me Too was overdubbed), five were on Steppin Out, then two tracks were on Rockin the Rhein. So, by then, almost a third was released before the whole tour was mixed down and released. The Playin' is also on E72 vol. 2.
August 13, 2013 Subject:
Though not quite as great as the big boys from this Lyceum run, 5-23 and 5-26, this show holds its own quite well with the rest of the tour. In particular, and as mentioned by others, are the fiery performances of Playing in the Band (my vote for best of the tour) and The Other One, which contains some very spacey jams. Also of note are the great Cold Rain and Snow, Rockin' Pneumonia, and Black Peter, originally included on the "Steppin' Out" release.
December 14, 2011 Subject:
Not included on this second set only SBD, the Playing in the Band is one of the best ever. Only clocking in at just over eleven minutes (the Europe 72' tour saw the first extensions on Playin', in particular this Strand Lycuem run really started the exploratory versions.)
Obviously you can't get this here any more. BUT pick up the Europe 72' Volume 2 disc for cheeper than the 400.00 Complete Europe 72'. It contains this monster Playin', one that would redefine the way they would play it from there on out.
April 14, 2011 Subject:
Hey Cliff Hucker, you use the word 'dissonant' as if it were a bad thing. Some folks might beg to differ. Anyway, the main attraction here is another long '72 Other One, with all sorts of variety, and, yes, atonality to spice things up, and as noted below, beautiful Garcia solo in Sing Me Back Home.
May 25, 2010 Subject:
The Other One: (6:30) Is that Duanne and Betts?
Another rather difficult performance to score. If the complete show was available in the sound quality of the Andy Lemieux remaster it would undoubtedly garner a score a couple of points higher. Although a number of songs from this performance have been included in official releases, the incomplete show is only available in poor audience recordings and unfortunately several songs are cut, and a significant portion of the second set is entirely missing. Luckily a partial recording including the compelling second set jam is available as a very good quality soundboard.
Following the neat Mexican Hat Dance tuning jam, Truckin' seems a bit rushed. But the thirty-minute performance of The Other One, though somewhat dissonant at times, is nicely jazzy and contains some brilliant passages. It's a rather edgy version, largely driven by Phil's bass lines. A gorgeous jazzy theme developes about three and a half minutes in, but unfortunately it breaks down prematurely. At 6:30, both guitars lock in on a great duet, Garcia and Weir sounding not unlike Duanne and Betts during this extended passage prior to the first verse. An atonal space segment follows, but Phil pushes this into a nice jazzy groove starting at 17:30. A Caution-like theme developes before a another spacey jam with sustained keyboard effects. Once again it's Phil bass driving the band back into The Other One theme prior to the second verse conclusion.
Pig's following performance of Lovelight> Two Souls is excellent. Unfortunately, most of the balance of the set is missing. Against the extraordinarily high level of the performances preceeeding this one, it pales somewhat in comparison. But in truth this is a dynamite show! The second set jam as well as the material included on the official releases is certainly quite compelling. (95 pts)
December 24, 2008 Subject:
The GRATEFUL DEAD "Live" at the Strand Lyceum, London England May 24, 1972